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Best way to showcase C++ programming experience

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Hello everyone!
I'm a recent graduate in computer science and was hoping you could give me your opinion on what's the best way to fulfill a job requirement of C++ programming experience.
 
From what I've seen most of the game development jobs have these two requirements among others:
1- A portfolio to showcase / Some experience in game development
2 - C/C++ programming experience
 
Sounds reasonable, but unfortunately in my case I didn't fulfill any of these two.  I'd made some game prototypes but never published anything, so my first step was to develop and publish my own game, which I accomplished some days ago(very proud of that by the way) . :D
 
The next obvious step was to learn C++, step that I've already started. I'm almost halfway through an entire C++ book, and it's going pretty well. 
But the problem is that since I didn't make any projects in college involving C++, I have nothing to showcase my knowledge with. In interviews they normally ask you about the projects you made, the problems you dealt with, the solutions,etc.
 
I thought about making my second game with C++, but of course that is going to involve learning a new game engine (since the one I used for the first game was Unity), and since it's going to be my first project with C++, it´ll probably be a slow process.
So, to speed things up I thought about getting a certification, which could allow me to be a viable candidate faster than finishing the development of a new game with a new engine with a new language. That way I could get certified, and start applying for jobs while developing the 2nd game, instead of waiting till I have a finished project.
 
So I don't know how good is a C++ certification to showcase that you know the language. Maybe I should get it or maybe I should ignore it and focus solely on game development.
 
If anyone could offer advice on the matter that would be great!! Thanks in advance.
 

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Game studios know that recent graduates have very little experience they can showcase.

 

If you don't have a big collection of demos and showpieces, provide what you have got. If you've had an active github account, consider showing it.  If you've got some finished coursework, consider showing it.  It will not be impressive, but it will be something that provides evidence that you can program.

 

Apply for jobs now, work your social network now.  Don't put it off until working through an additional certification.  You just finished a certification, your computer science degree.

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Instead of going for a full game just develop a system that exists within games. You can create an inventory and show its working through the console window. You just need to show you can work with the language no ones expecting anything amazing, they just need to know you can handle doing something they ask.

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My share;
- specialize/ shine in one specific area, most (AAA) studios don't want a "be a bit good at everything" programmer but prefer an AI, gameplay, tech etc. expert
- a code sample where you solve a complex problem efficiently and clear/readable is good (may sound cliche but still)

Also try to figure out what you want to be good at and where your talent lies, focus and perform on that.

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Another thing you might try, since you mentioned Unity, is maybe parcel out some portion of your existing game, and make it a C++ DLL.  This may nor may not be feasible depending your game, but you could have a separate DLL for the pathfinding portion or whatnot.

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Thanks everyone, I like your ideas. I was convinced I forcefully had to do a large scale project to be able to put it on my resume, but I'm relieved to see that, at least for now, that's not the case. I'll try them out and hopefully they will serve as enough proof.

 

 

Game studios know that recent graduates have very little experience they can showcase.

 

If you don't have a big collection of demos and showpieces, provide what you have got. If you've had an active github account, consider showing it.  If you've got some finished coursework, consider showing it.  It will not be impressive, but it will be something that provides evidence that you can program.

 

Apply for jobs now, work your social network now.  Don't put it off until working through an additional certification.  You just finished a certification, your computer science degree.

 

Problem is, I'm not really in a place where there are a lot of options for game development. Once in a while I may find a position or two, but they are not for recent graduates. All the ones I've seen are from mid to senior level. Should I apply for those kind of positions regardless? 

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Yes, apply anyway for entry level work.  Don't apply for the senior roles they are advertising.

 

Most entry level positions are not advertised since there is no need.  A little word-of-mouth discussion to key people and plenty of qualified applicants apply, plus unsolicited applications are always coming in.  They may drop the word at some nearby college campuses and online groups, but there is no need to pay for advertising for the position due to high applicant interest. 

 

It is better for you to work your social network if you can, find the friends or friends-of-friends who work in the industry and ask them about jobs and send in your application.  Even so, continue to submit your application to every company nearby.

 

You didn't state your location on the globe, but you might also consider moving to a game development hub if you aren't there already.  Companies usually do not pay to relocate entry level workers. Location is one of the first things observed when reviewing a job application.

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